Previously published research suggested that eating yogurt may lower the risk of bowel cancer by changing the type and volume of bacteria in the gut or microbiome. Since it wasn’t clear whether yogurt intake might also be associated with a lower risk of pre-cancerous growths - known as adenomas - researchers looked at the diets and subsequent development of different types of adenoma among 32,606 men who were part of the Health Professionals Follow Up Study and 55,743 women who were part of the Nurses Health Study. Their conclusion? Eating two or more weekly servings of yogurt may help to lower the risk of developing the abnormal growths or adenomas which precede the development of bowel cancer at least in men. The associations were strongest for adenomas that are highly likely to become cancerous.
The study – published in the journal Gut – reveals that all the participants had a lower bowel endoscopy - a procedure that enables a clinician to view the inside of the gut - between 1986 and 2012. Every four years, they provided detailed information on lifestyle and diet, including how much yogurt they ate. During the study period, 5,811 adenomas developed in the men and 8,116 in the women. Compared with men who didn't eat yogurt, those who ate two or more servings a week were 19 percent less likely to develop a conventional adenoma.
No obvious association was seen for men with a potentially more dangerous type of adenoma (serrated), however, a trend towards reduced risk was seen for those measuring one or more centimeters, which is considered to be large. No such associations between yogurt intake and the development of adenomas were evident among the women. This is an observational study, and as such, can't establish cause. Further research would be needed to confirm the findings and uncover the biology involved, but the large number of people studied and the regular updates on diet and lifestyle factors add heft to the findings.
The researchers point out that Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus - two bacteria commonly found in live yogurt - may lower the number of cancer-causing chemicals in the gut. And the stronger link seen for adenomas growing in the colon may partly be due to the lower acidity in this part of the gut, making it a more hospitable environment for these bacteria. Alternatively, yogurt may have anti-inflammatory properties and may reduce the “leakiness” of the gut as adenomas are associated with increased gut permeability.
Making Cheese And Yogurt Taste Better
Cheese, beers, yogurts, soy sauce or yeast doughs are all fermented foods which have a taste known to be very popular with consumers across the globe. Apart from the volatile aroma compounds, other non-volatile compounds also contribute to their taste profile. A few of these include fragments of long protein molecules that are produced during enzymatic or microbial conversion - also known to many as fermentation of milk or grain protein. It is still unclear which of the fragments out of the 1,000 different protein fragments in the fermented milk products are responsible for this flavor. The reason for this confusion is that previously used methods of analysis were very time consuming and labor intensive.
New Analytical Approach
Thomas Hofmann led a team of scientists that developed a new process of analysis to address this problem. The scientists tested the efficiency of the procedure for the first time on two varieties of cream cheese with different levels of bitterness. The objective was to pinpoint the exact protein fragment for the bitter off-flavor under some production conditions.
What makes this method so advanced is that the researchers combined existing methods of proteome research with sensory effect methods to accurately identify the exact flavor-giving protein fragments from all the other fragments. Andreas Dunkel from the Leibniz-institute of Food Systems Biology said that the term sensoproteomics was coined from the procedure.
Reducing Bitter Flavor
The conclusion was that there were about 1,600 different protein fragments contained in dairy products that could be responsible for the bitterness. Subsequent liquid chromatography-coupled mass spectrometer findings assisted by in-silico methods effectively reduced the number of protein fragments to about 340. In the end, comparative spectrometric, qualitative and sensory analyses reduced the number of fragments responsible for the bitter flavor on the cheese flavor to 17.
Hofmann is certain that the sensoproteomic approach developed would contribute to the efficient identification of these flavor-given protein fragments in a wide variety of foods using the high throughput method which is a significant help for the optimization of the taste of products. With this understanding we have a clear knowledge on the things that make fermented products what they are and how to pinpoint the exact compound responsible for the taste.
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Lisa S. Jones is a certified nurse, nutritionist, fitness coach and health expert. Her training credentials include a B.Sc. in Nursing from California State University in 2013 and Youth Nutrition Specialist Certification from the American Fitness Professionals and Associates in 2015. In 2017, she also received Holistic Nutrition Certification from the American Fitness Professionals and Associates.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.